Leanne Marie (Brown) Manning was born to Rex and Betty (Novak) Brown, in York, on Aug. 12, 1962.
She grew up on a farm near Fairmont, helping the family with all the chores. She mostly helped her mother by cooking, baking, raising chickens and putting up produce and fruit. They worked hard. Leanne graduated from Fairmont High School in May 1980, and from there enrolled in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Leanne graduated from UNL in May of 1984 with a bachelor’s degree in Education and Family Resources, and has been an avid Husker fan ever since. Later she attended Kansas State University and received her master’s degree in Family Life Education and Consultation in December 1985. From a young age, Leanne wanted to be an Extension Educator, and she fulfilled this dream when she started as an Extension Educator in Gray County, Kansas, in 1986. In 1988, Leanne got an Extension Educator position in Saline County and continued to work there nearly to the day of her death. Recently, she was recognized by the University of Nebraska for an Excellence in Extension Team Award in 2020 for her work providing professional development to childcare providers. One of many awards during her career.
Leanne has always been passionate about education, helping others through educational programming, and watching youth develop into their potential. Some of her passions outside of work included music, church, watching songbirds (especially bluebirds), gardening and spending time with her four cats, Truman, Furrari, Boo and Otis.
In April of 1986, she was united in marriage to Mark Manning, and they just celebrated their 35th anniversary together. Emily Mae Manning was born in January 1994 to Mark and Leanne. Leanne was a wonderful and dedicated mother to Emily. Additionally, Leanne enjoyed spending time with Mark on the acreage they bought where they built their house. They had always wanted to help preserve nature and wildlife and spent many hours planting trees, flowers and native grasses. It was a labor of love. They built their dream nature reserve together and is one of the achievements Leanne is most proud.
Leanne was diagnosed with an aggressive and rare uterine cancer near the end of August 2020. She fought hard to beat the cancer and never stopped trying. She died 58 years young during the afternoon of April 9, 2021, at the Buffet Cancer Center in Omaha. Leanne is survived and forever loved by her husband, Mark Manning; daughter, Emily Manning and son-in-law, Drew Amen; sister, Charlene Brown; and father, Rex Brown. As well as her brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Thomas and Bette Manning, Melinda Hofferber, Chris and Brenda Manning, Kent and Cindy Manning, Jennifer Manning and Matt and Heather Manning, along with many nieces and nephews. Leanne was a quiet, soft-spoken, practical and, above all, kind and caring person. She will be dearly missed by her loved ones, friends and colleagues.
A Celebration of Life was April 17 at the Grace United Methodist Church in Crete. Memorial contributions are suggested to the Grace United Methodist Church, the Buffet Cancer Center, Nebraska 4-H foundation and Audubon Spring Creek Prairie. Final resting place is the Kramer Cemetery at a later date. Condolences may be left for the family at www.lauberfh.com.